THE BIG P: STRAIGHT, BENT, SHORT, FAT, THIN
YES, MEN TOO COME IN ALL DIFFERENT SHAPES AND SIZES (AND WE’RE NOT TALKING GENERAL BODY IMAGE HERE) BUT WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN AND, MORE IMPORTANTLY, HOW DOES IT AFFECT YOU AND YOUR SEX LIFE? WE ASKED DR. PETER NG, A CONSULTANT UROLOGICAL SURGEON AND PRESIDENT CONTINENCE FOUNDATION OF MALAYSIA, SOME HARD-BITING QUESTIONS ABOUT THE MALE MEMBER. BE WARNED, THE TRUTH MAY BE HARD TO SWALLOW.
Can you ‘break’ a penis when it’s hard?
There isn’t actually a bone per se in the penis (the term ‘boner’ from the 1950s probably originated from the notion of hardness), but you can “break” your penis as an aftereffect of vigorous sex. It’s called a penile fracture and it is a severe form of bending injury to the erect penis that occurs when a membrane called the tunica albuginea tears. The most common way of fracturing it usually happens when instead of penetrating a normal location, it hits a solid structure. How would you know whether this sensitive organ is broken? There is normally a popping sound, in some cases connected with wounding, swelling and loss of erection.
Dr Peter says: “A broken penis or penile fracture is serious, painful and requires urgent medical attention. It can be diagnosed with a physical exam, and prompt surgical repair is usually recommended. If it is untreated, a broken penis may result in deformity of the penis or inability to have or maintain an erection.”
Is there a special connection between guys and their little “friend”?
Some guys have a weird connection with their penises, unlike most women with their vaginas. Ever seen your man flap his member about with no hands involved? Yes, we share your pain. Some guys even go as far as naming their member and sometimes even treat it like it’s their best friend. They take pride in their penis (something us gals should do more of with our bodies) and raise them on a mental pedestal. There are hardly any men who would complain about their penises and it’s this connection that makes them feel that there is a need to name theirs — Bizarre indeed!
Dr Peter says: “Many men feel their worth is associated with their members and do take pride in taking care of it. I am not aware of any of my patients having pet names for their organs or other terms of endearment. Sound pretty weird if you ask me!”
Penises seem to be morning creatures, and are often up before everyone else. Does it have a mind of its own?
Morning wood refers to spontaneous occurrence of erections during sleep or while waking up, thanks to the nervous system which controls the penis. It typically happens about three to five times during sleep and while a few different theories have been proposed over the years to explain this phenomenon, what causes it still remains uncertain. Some scientists think this is a kind of self-inflicted exercise regimen whereby the periodic blood flow makes the penis stronger and less likely to have a case of the limps when you don’t want them. So technically, when men wake up with a big P, it doesn’t really have anything to do with naughty dreams…you just caught it mid-exercise!
Dr Peter says: “This phenomenon is known as nocturnal penile tumescence (NPT) or more colloquially known as morning wood. Some have suggested that the reason behind morning wood is the result of a release of nitric oxide (NO) which diffuses into smooth muscles, making it relaxed. This also causes the blood vessels to expand causing an increase in blood flow to the penis.”
THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME
There’s a lot of talk about size varying according to race, any truth to this?
While genetics is a factor, it certainly isn’t the only one in determining the size of a penis because it depends on which genes you’ve inherited from mom and dad. This is also the reason why siblings may have different sizes because hormonal exposure, age, weight and varying levels of physical activity play a part as well. It is misconception that race plays an important role in finding the average penis size.
Dr. Peter says: “I have published a study in 1997 on the length of the penis of Malaysian men and found that the average length of the erect penis is 12.11cm (4.8 inches). Men with short penises would therefore be those of an erect length below 8.57cm.”
Can a penis shrink? Can it shrink to the point that it eventually disappears?
Girl, shrinkage is real! Frosty climate and chilly water are the penis’ adversaries and testicles need to be around a warm environment (or at least body temperature) to successfully produce sperm and testosterone. So it’s quite normal for a man’s apparatus to shrink closer to his body to stay warm after a dunk in the pool. The reverse happens when he’s hot, causing his testicles and penis to hang more remotely from his body.
Dr Peter says: “Yes, it does. The penis is made of elastic smooth muscle which will respond to sexual stimuli by increasing blood flow to fill the penis and engorge it. Conversely the cold temperatures will cause vasoconstriction and shrink the size of the penis. The only real clinical problem is in the syndrome called “Koro” in which young Asian men develop a belief their penis is shrinking and will gradually retract into their abdomen and completely disappear—bringing about their demise subsequently. In some cultures and patients I have encountered, they solicit the help of their family members who take turns to hold on to their penises in an effort to stave off the inevitable. This is of course a psychological condition. No one’s penis can actually disappear.”
So, which matters more? Width or length?
The primordial question of width vs. length, who makes the better lover? Short and thick, long and narrow, or some other variation? There are various reasons why penis width could be depicted as all the more sexually fulfilling by ladies. The width of the penis at the base may be all the more stimulating to the clitoris (a little, delicate organ found on the vulva, just over the urethra and the vaginal opening) and specialists suggest that wide penis gives a lady a ‘more prominent feeling of completion” and it is along these lines that the woman gains a more fulfilling physical and mental experience.
Dr Peter says: “Sounds logical enough. The majority of nerve endings that are stimulated during penetration are located close to the entrance of the vagina. Therefore, it is not unreasonable to assume width plays a greater factor as it stretches the vaginal wall which in turn stimulates the nerves. However I am not aware of any clinical studies that have documented this as a fact though.”
PSSSST…WHAT ABOUT UNUSUAL CURVES AND SHAPES (NO, WE’RE NOT TALKING BALLOON POODLES). WILL THE SHAPE OF THE PENIS AFFECT THE LEVEL OF SATISFACTION? IS A CURVED PENIS NORMAL AND HEALTHY?
Shapes can vary and most ladies have admitted that length, width, appearance, and composition are all variables that don’t appear to make a difference in a long term relationship. It is normal for the penis to bend somewhat to the left or right when it’s erect and a bent penis can essentially be a consequence of an individual’s anatomy. However, if your partner finds it is causing him pain or trouble in sexual relations, consult a doctor immediately!
Dr Peter says: “A curved penis is not uncommon. It only becomes a problem if the angle of curvature exceeds 15 degrees and
causes pain during intercourse due to the torque exerted on the penis. This is usually due to Peyronie’s disease and the person should seek expert treatment from a urologist. It is easily repaired surgically.
More to come…
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